Choosing the right game for 19 adults

by jason

Thanks so much for your website. It has lots of information, but so much so that I am a bit overwhelmed!

I have a group that I think will be 19 adults all approximately ages 45-50 (9 men, 10 women) plus myself as host. I guess it is possible a few might cancel, so need to be ready for that contingency. Plan is to have the party outdoors in a backyard. None of the 19 players have done this sort of thing before.

Can you help me choose which game would be best for me? Or if there are a few good choices, point out the differences between them, to understand better how they compare?


My response:

Thanks for the kind words about my site.

So with 19 guests, some of whom may cancel, you are probably looking at a game for something like 15 to 20 people. That means one of the games on this page.

While all of the games are ideal for first time hosts, some are more ideal than others (because they're slightly easier).

So I would recommend:

Hollywood Lies - a Hollywood themed game. (But as I wrote it you might want to take this recommendation with a pinch of salt.)

A Dead Man's Chest which is a pirate themed game. If you get all 19 guests you can use some of the free extra characters that come with that game.

The Final Curtain which is set in an amateur dramatic society.

The Spy Who Killed Me set in an Oxbridge college. Again, you might need to use the free extra characters.

All the games come with complete instructions, so I suggest that you pick the theme that interests you (and your guests the most).

I hope that helps, and have a good party!

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Jul 24, 2017
Oops - forgetful me NEW
by: Steve

I forgot to mention Way out West and Lei'd to Rest because . . . I'm an idiot.

On Way out West I just missed, and I realise that I need to update the description of Lei'd to Rest to include the extra characters in the expansion pack.

So nothing sinister, just your usual run-of-the-mill being a bit rubbish.

Sorry about that.

Incidentally, you can get a free copy of Way out West by signing up to Freeform Games' newsletter. It's just the minimum version (for 10 characters) but you will get a good idea of what to expect from it.

Jul 24, 2017
another followup NEW
by: jason

At this point, I think I might have as few as 13 and as many as 19. Two games that seem to match up with this range are Lei'd to Rest and Way out West. You did not mention these two options initially - is that because they are more difficult for beginners to try, or any other reason I should know about? Any reason one of these two would be preferable to the other for a group of newbies?

Jul 19, 2017
More answers NEW
by: Steve

You're right, I don't mention the free extra characters for A Dead Man's Chest (nor the other games), and perhaps I should.

Anyway, the extra characters are all created by customers who needed an extra person or two. They've then sent them into Freeform Games (the publisher), who put them onto their website.

A Dead Man's Chest is one of Freeform Games more popular games, and it has ten or so extra characters. Some of them are better than others, but you should find one in there that you like.

As for the difference between Freeform Games and Murder Mystery Games, the Murder Mystery Games are slightly simpler than the Freeform Games as they don't have so many overlapping plots and objectives.

The downside of that is that it can mean that the murder is not as prominent as in other murder mystery games (but a lot of people find that a good thing).

I should probably mention here that I'm a partner in Freeform Games, so please do take what I say with a pinch of salt. (But Freeform Games also has a money back guarantee - so you have nothing to lose.)

I hope that helps!

Jul 18, 2017
followup questions NEW
by: Anonymous

Thanks for the response. Two follow up questions:

You mentioned Dead Man's Chest as an option, saying to use the additional free characters that come with the game. I can't see anything in the description of the game that mentions additional free characters. Is this noted somewhere? Would the material provided for these "additional characters" be of similar format and detail as for the original characters?

Also, can you possible compare Freeform vs. Murder Mystery Games Ltd? How are they similar, how are they different?

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New game

Cover for A Purrfect Murder

A Purrfect Murder - a cat-themed murder mystery for 9-12 guests.

Don't know where to start?

Here's my suggested quick route through the site:

Step 1 - Go to Choosing a Game to choose the game that suits your party best.

Step 2 - Review the Tips for Hosts for helpful advice.

Step 3 - If you want to keep up to date with the latest murder mystery game news, click on my What's New page.

Step 4 - Once you've had your party - tell me how it went! Click here to tell me your murder mystery party story.

Got a question? Click here to go to the FAQ.

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